by Mary Paddock


Publisher Dreaming Big Publications

Published in Science Fiction & Fantasy

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Special Pricing

Sing will be available for .99 next week.

Book Description

Meet a man who doesn't understand women or whales, a woman who cries when it rains (or is it the other way around?), and others in this whimsical collection of short stories and vignettes.

Sample Chapter



He carried the shovel in one hand and the newly wrapped bundle in the other. The anemic juniper tree on the far side of the drive was the only place he hadn't buried one yet.

He could hear the voice of an orca floating in from the bay and a reply from one further away. They were as much a part of his grief as the spray that dripped down the back of his slicker, the rushing slap of waves against rock retaining walls, the smell of salt, fish, and sea weed. For an instant he considered pausing to turn his collar up, but the journey to the burial site was hard enough without having put his burden down and pick it up again. No, it was best just to keep moving forward. Get it over with. Move on.

Why did they always arrive at dawn?

Near the juniper, he placed the bundle on the ground, clutched his shovel with both hands and drove it into the earth, gently separated the sod like he was cutting a piece bread or angel cake, and moved it aside. After that it was metallic scrapes, rocks and soil hushed, scooped and turned out, the same rhythm each time, until the hole was deep enough.

He picked up the bundle, considered opening it for another look and rejected it. They'd come closer this time than before, but it had ended like all the others and would start to stink the second the sun hit it and the smell would cling to everything like a spider web. Grief, as he knew it, smelled like dead fish and lingering only made it harder.

But linger he did. He couldn't help himself. The universe owed him a second of stillness for giving and taking away so many times and this time he was calling on it to pay up. He looked across the lawn to the thready mirror of the ocean.


The pilot whales and the orcas were closer now, their voices rising in unified cries and, not far behind, the hump backs. They were coming to the funeral, whether he wanted them there or not.  

Excerpted from "Sing" by Mary Paddock. Copyright © 2017 by Mary Paddock. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Mary Paddock

Mary Paddock

Mary Paddock lives with her family in the Missouri Ozarks. To date, she's written four books, and numerous short stories. Her short work has been published in a variety of venues. Mary's an avid gardener, loves long walks, and good books. In her spare time, she rescues strays, flea market china, and abandoned ideas.

View full Profile of Mary Paddock

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